“I’m grateful to Director Jeffreys for his years of service, ensuring the dignity and safety of the incarcerated people of Illinois,” Gov. J.B. Pritzker said in a statement.
Back Home, Back to Work: Occupational Training Prepares Formerly Incarcerated People for the Workplace
Research shows formerly incarcerated people who maintained employment for one year after release had only a 16% recidivism rate, compared to a 52% rate for those who did not stay employed.
A 2018 report found 43% of those released from prison in Illinois will be convicted of another crime and return to prison. About a quarter of those re-offenses are for so-called “technical violations” like violating curfew or missing a meeting with a probation officer.
Thousands of restrictive laws govern people who have been released from prison in the United States, making it difficult for them to find housing, employment and to restart life after they have done their time.
Tawana Pope and Nicholas Crayton had their own unexpected journeys and challenges, but continue to push for a better life. Pope is the founder of the nonprofit Diamonds In The Making Outreach and previously had been in and out of jail, struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. Crayton was released from prison just last year from the Life Skills Re-Entry Center.
It’s been 20 years since then Illinois Gov. George Ryan commuted the sentences of 167 people on death row, marking a major step toward the eventual abolition of the death penalty in the state.
Three former Illinois prison guards face life behind bars after the 2018 fatal beating of a 65-year-old inmate in a case marked by the unpunished lies of other correctional officers who continue to get pay raises, records obtained by The Associated Press and court documents show.
Through Unique Program, Men in Prison Overcome Challenges to Earn Degrees from Northwestern University
While many schools will offer classes for credit to prison inmates, Northwestern University says its the only top 10 school that grants degrees to prisoners. And next spring, students at Stateville Correctional Center, a maximum-security prison in Will County, will be the first to receive their bachelor's degrees from Northwestern while in prison.
Willette Benford, who has served time in prison herself, has been appointed to serve as Chicago’s director of re-entry. It’s a newly created role that was part of a $13 million initiative to support reentry services for people leaving prison.
Incarcerated people in Illinois prisons are having difficulty getting access to basic necessities, like hygiene items or detergent. The Illinois Department of Corrections says this is due to a supply chain issue, but advocates point to disputes between IDOC and vendors.
Incarcerated people in Illinois haven’t had the ability to get onto parole since the ‘70s. But a bill in Springfield is working to bring it back, providing parole hearings for inmates who’ve served at least 20 years in prison.
While the number of women in prisons is relatively small compared to the number of incarcerated men, the rate of female incarceration is on the rise. Black women in particular are overrepresented in the nation’s jails and prisons.
In the U.S., many people view incarceration as the punishment one receives for breaking the law. But a recently released study indicates that for the more than 3.3 million people with criminal records in Illinois, punishment continues well beyond time served.
Nearly one-third of federal correctional officer jobs in the United States are vacant, forcing prisons to use cooks, teachers, nurses and other workers to guard inmates.
At the end of 2020, about 1,400 women were in the Illinois prison system, according to the Illinois Department of Corrections. One group is aiming to cut that number in half.
The Illinois Department of Corrections will resume in-person visits at its facilities statewide over the next month, giving prisoners a chance to see their loved ones for the first time in more than a year.